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¡TODOS AL RODEO!

A VAQUERO ALPHABET BOOK

An attractive alphabet book that effectively explores horses and cowboys in two languages.

Awards & Accolades

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A bilingual children’s book that explores the alphabet through the Spanish-influenced traditions of the rodeo.

Pérez’s previous volume, ¡Todos a Celebrar! (2019), touched on various aspects of Hispanic culture in an alphabet book in the English and Spanish languages. In this latest addition to her series, she turns to the rodeo and its origins in the world of cowboys. Once again, the book aims to teach children new words while also emphasizing their connection to the Spanish-speaking cultures of the Americas. Each page presents a different rodeo-related concept, from “arena” to “the zillion cattle brands,” with a short description and a question designed to encourage a response, such as “Have you seen a horse with horseshoes?” The full text appears in both English and Spanish, and it’s clear and readable in both languages. Full-color photographs, including stock images, feature rodeo cowboys as well as children on horseback in traditional costume or working with animals. Although some words (“gallop,” “bronco,” “mustang”) are drawn from the world of horses in general, others, such as “escaramuza” (a choreographed routine performed by women on horseback), are specific to Latino culture and Mexico’s in particular. The book takes a few liberties in order to find a word for every letter (such as “Xx is for the shape of barbed wire”), but on the whole, it does a good job of matching the format to the theme. Pérez is also skilled at connecting well-known elements of cowboy culture to their Hispanic origins, making the book useful as more than just an alphabet primer. The images and text are engaging and dynamic throughout, and adults and children will find it enjoyable to read and discuss together.

An attractive alphabet book that effectively explores horses and cowboys in two languages.

Pub Date: Aug. 29, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-9822422-7-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Del Alma Publications, LLC

Review Posted Online: May 12, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2020

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SNACK, SNOOZE, SKEDADDLE

HOW ANIMALS GET READY FOR WINTER

A good choice for a late fall storytime.

Animal behaviors change as they prepare to face the winter.

Migrate, hibernate, or tolerate. With smooth rhymes and jaunty illustrations, Salas and Gévry introduce three strategies animals use for coping with winter cold. The author’s long experience in imparting information to young readers is evident in her selection of familiar animals and in her presentation. Spread by spread she introduces her examples, preparing in fall and surviving in winter. She describes two types of migration: Hummingbirds and monarchs fly, and blue whales travel to the warmth of the south; earthworms burrow deeper into the earth. Without using technical words, she introduces four forms of hibernation—chipmunks nap and snack; bears mainly sleep; Northern wood frogs become an “icy pop,” frozen until spring; and normally solitary garter snakes snuggle together in huge masses. Those who can tolerate the winter still change behavior. Mice store food and travel in tunnels under the snow; moose grow a warmer kind of fur; the red fox dives into the snow to catch small mammals (like those mice); and humans put on warm clothes and play. The animals in the soft pastel illustrations are recognizable, more cuddly than realistic, and quite appealing; their habitats are stylized. The humans represent varied ethnicities. Each page includes two levels of text, and there’s further information in the extensive backmatter. Pair with Joyce Sidman and Rick Allen’s Winter Bees (2014).

A good choice for a late fall storytime. (glossary) (Informational picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5415-2900-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Millbrook/Lerner

Review Posted Online: June 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2019

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A WORLD TOGETHER

Engaging, well-chosen images and a clear, coherent text illuminate the importance of empathy for the world’s inhabitants.

Large color photographs (occasionally composed of montages) and accessible, simple text highlight global similarities and differences, always focusing on our universal connections.

While child readers may not recognize Manzano, the Puerto Rican actress who played Maria on Sesame Street, adults will recognize her as a trusted diverse voice. In her endnote, she explains her desire to “encourage lively conversations about shared experiences.” Starting out with the familiar, home and community, the text begins with “How many WONDERFUL PEOPLE do you know?” Then it moves out to the world: “Did you know there are about 8 BILLION PEOPLE on the planet?” The photo essay features the usual concrete similarities and differences found in many books of this type, such as housing (a Mongolian yurt opposite a Hong Kong apartment building overlooking a basketball court), food (dumplings, pizza, cotton candy, a churro, etc.), and school. Manzano also makes sure to point out likenesses in emotions, as shown in a montage of photos from countries including China, Spain, Kashmir (Pakistan/India), and the United States. At the end, a world map and thumbnail images show the locations of all photos, revealing a preponderance of examples from the U.S. and a slight underrepresentation for Africa and South America.

Engaging, well-chosen images and a clear, coherent text illuminate the importance of empathy for the world’s inhabitants. (Informational picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4263-3738-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: National Geographic Kids

Review Posted Online: May 2, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2020

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